Orange County deaths
Evart William Ardis, 89, of Irvine, a retired director of career
planning and placement, died Oct. 3, 2002, of a stroke. Arrangements
by Westminster Memorial Park & Mortuary. Sons, James, Thomas; five
grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren.
Former Ypsilanti school superintendent Evart
Ardis Academy bears his name
Tuesday, October 8, 2002
BY EMMA JACKSON
News Staff Reporter
Evart "Slim" Ardis, former superintendent of Ypsilanti Public
Schools and director of career planning and placement at the
University of Michigan died Thursday of a massive stroke. He was 89.
Ardis moved from Ypsilanti to Irvine, Calif., in 1982 after his
retirement from U-M, but maintained an affection for Ypsilanti and
the school that bears his name, Ardis Renaissance Academy.
"We have a great fondness for Ypsilanti," Ardis said in a 2000
interview with The News. "It became our adopted home."
His son, Thomas J. Ardis of Texas, described his father as
outgoing. "He could have been a politician, he was so gregarious,"
Thomas Ardis said. "He was very involved, socially and in his
career, and he knew a million people."
John Salcau, a retired Ypsilanti Public School administrator
Ardis hired in 1954, described Ardis as supportive, warm and caring.
"Slim was a wonderful person, and I had the highest respect for
him," Salcau said. "He was the kind of superintendent who delegated
responsibility and then gave you the leeway to fulfill the
Born in McBain, Ardis graduated from Western Michigan University
in 1934. He served at the helm of a number of school districts
before coming to Ypsilanti in 1952. He spent seven years in
Ypsilanti and led the district through an extensive building plan,
including two elementaries and two middle schools.
When he accepted the U-M job in 1959 he continued to live in
Ypsilanti and be involved in the community, serving on several
boards, including for the Boys and Girls Club. He was named
Ypsilanti Citizen of the Year in 1957.
Ardis Renaissance Academy was dedicated in 1971. Thomas Ardis
said his father was honored and a little embarrassed that it was
named after him.
"My dad pointed out that he hadn't been superintendent very long,
but I believe (the honor) was a reflection of the big impact he
The family requests that donations be made to the academy, at
2100 Ellsworth Road, Ypsilanti.
© 2002 Ann Arbor News. Used with permission